Nvidia Pascal GP106 To Arrive Late 2016

Both AMD and Nvidia have tended to launch higher end flagships before moving to fill the rest of the lineup. The same is expected for Nvidia’s Pascal launch, with the “flagship” GP104 based cards set to arrive before the midrange GP106 does. As we know GP104 will arrive with the GTX 1080 and 1070 at Computex and reports are surfacing that we won’t see GP106 till the autumn of this year.

By holding back the release, Nvidia balances out their sales and gives a chance for last gen cards to get be cleared out of stock first. This is especially true of the low-end as GM206, the current Maxwell midrange chip, is still in production. Many of Nvidia’s AiB partners also recently launched new 75W GTX 950 cards, raising suggestions that Nvidia is preparing cards to counter the more power efficiency Polaris 11 which should arrive before GP106.

With GP104 reaching down to the 1060Ti, the GP106 will likely power the GTX 1060, 1050Ti and maybe even the GTX 1050 as well. According to the source, the chip will also not require a PCIe power connector, with a TDP of at least under 75W. This would put is TDP near that of Polaris 11 which is also under 75W. With GP106 already spotted on the Drive PX2, it’s only a matter of time though till Nvidia launches the cards,

NVIDIA DRIVE PX2 Powered by Two GP106 Chips

NVIDIA showed of its DRIVE PX 2 system – the new iteration of its autonomous and driver assistance AI platform – at last week’s GTC 2016 conference, and eagle-eyed viewers may have noticed that the board shown to the audience by CEO Jen-Hsun Huang was sporting a pair of integrated GP106 GPUs, eschewing the two Maxwell-based NVIDIA Tegra X1 chips that powered the original DRIVE PX, and confirming a rumour that we reported last week.

The GP106 runs on NVIDIA’s new Pascal architecture – set to hit the market in the latest line of GeForce graphics cards this Summer – which can perform at 24 DL TOPS or 8 TFLOPS, and features up to 4GB GDDR5.

NVIDIA hopes that the new DRIVE PX 2 will power the next generation of driverless cars – the DRIVE PX has so far only be used to power the ‘infotainment’ system on-board a Tesla, for example – and has already shipped to a number of unnamed Tier 1 customers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnVVJSIiKpY

“DRIVE PX platforms are built around deep learning and include a powerful framework (Caffe) to run DNN models designed and trained on NVIDIA DIGITS,” according to NVIDIA. “DRIVE PX also includes an advanced computer vision (CV) library and primitives. Together, these technologies deliver an impressive combination of detection and tracking.”

Is Nvidia GTC Drive PX 2 Pascal GP106?

All throughout this week, we’ve been treated to leak after leak and release after release of new Polaris and Pascal information. After we’ve gotten die shots of  GP100 and GP104, what may be another Pascal chip has surfaced. According to Videocardz, the Drive PX 2 module Jen-Hsun Huang waved in front of our faces might actually be Pascal this time around. More specifically, it might be GP106 or GP107.

Nvidia took some heat earlier in the year when CEO Jen-Hsun Huang took to the stage and waved a Drive PX 2 around that was Maxwell. This time around though, it looks like Pascal has come far enough along to make it into engineering samples. Based off of size comparisons to GM206, the Drive PX 2 GPU is too small in comparison. This means it is either the budget GP106 or the smaller mobile GP107.

This stems from the fact that the die is really similar to GM206 and given what we know of GP104 and GP100, the GP106 and GP107 should be of a similar size to GM207 and GM206. I believe that given the MXM format, we may be seeing the GP107 as that chip is meant for the mobile market. Using a chip that hits both the lucrative laptop and car markets would make a lot of sense. Either way, budget Pascal may be coming sooner than expected.

Nvidia Pascal Launch May Be Sooner Than We Thought

Last month we received word that the first Pascal chips would be launching a bit sooner than expected. At that time, GP100 was expected to drop in April and GP104 in June. According to the latest rumors, it looks like that timetable was accurate, with the GP100 based Tesla chip coming in April around GTC. What’s more, we’re getting more details about when the rest of Nvidia’s Pascal lineup will launch.

As with the previous report, GP104 will arrive in June and it looks like the GTX lineup will be based off that, with both the GTX 1080 and 1070 being GP104 chips. Near the end of the year in Q4, we can expect GP106 and GP107. These will be longer end chips and likely power the GTX 1060 and 1050. Finally, we have the Titan which will use GP100 and a GP108 in early 2017. This follow’s Nvidia’s new trend of releasing a GTX x80 first, followed by the Titan, then finally a GTX x80Ti. While it’s good for Nvidia’s sales, it moves high-end users into a quicker upgrade schedule than if all the cards launched at the same time.

The Tesla launching first makes a whole lot of sense as enterprise users can pay the high premiums for early HBM2 and 16nm. A June launch for GP104 may point to them using HBM2 as the timeline is a bit tight for GDDR5X though it is doable. The biggest question is how well Pascal will perform as it is a stopgap architecture between Maxwell and Volta, like a Maxwellv2 though the die shrink to 16nm should make some great gains in and of itself.